This week I finally moved into DoESLiverpool! Getting a half tonne LaserScript 1290 Pro laser cutter onto the 4th floor was a minor miracle and could not have done it without the power of Liverpools tech community/mates: Mega props to @wowballsUK @DefProc @mcknut @MethodDan John Ramsey, JR, Hakim @aBookofThings @DoESLiverpool @Defnetmedia for the help, support, problem solving and heavy lifting! @DoeSLiverpool now centre of all things laser in Liverpool City centre… & Special thanks to Simon Derwent of Wowballs and Open Source Swan Pedalo fame for driving & finding a temporary home for the Currently bathysphere kit with Grace at the Liverpool Water Sports Centre
Last month had awesome inspiring research trip with Urbanekuensteruhr to @dasLabor with @lambdafu looking into hackspace & maker/geek culture in Bochum. Love dasLabor projects; a talented and important community in Bochum https://www.das-labor.org/wiki/LABOR_Wiki
Great friendly and interesting creative people. Working on some sort of exchange with @DoESLiverpool next summer. Marcus Brinkmann & co took me to amazing space http://www.dienstagstreff.de/ with restored pinball machines, studio spaces, 8bit tapestry & C64 lab.
Now to design & build some sort of large social construction machine…more on project soon…
Pulling stuff together this week for #minecraft #cardboard textures for the Open Hardware Jam at @Oggcamp 19- 20 October 2013, this weekend at the Art & Design Academy at LJMU. Looking to do some minecraft construction using @defproc ‘s amazing TriLateration (TLRN) crane fresh from its public debut at MiniMaker Faire Manchester and the AND Fair at AND Festival…
Maybe one day we can make cardboard redstone with RaspberryPi’s and conductive ink?
I’m made up to be one of the Open Hardware Jam organisers alongwith Patrick Fenner and Dan Lynch. It’s an informal jam of diverse disruptive and open source thinking, systems, artworks and products from all over the UK from the internet of things to local letterpress printing, GSR bodysensing to minecraft to community PCB production: its going to be a totally hybrid physical and virtual experience!
Today been building up Kinect skeleton tracking synths in Supercollider with the brilliant Synapse OSC app by Ryan Challinor for MakingSense exhibition opens next Fri at @falloutfactory with @TickyLowe @cheapjack @AilieRutherford & DavidOgle Don’t miss it! http://pic.twitter.com/mfMj1Mubwq now comes the lovely task of re-building in windows6…
The drone narrative in mainstream culture imagines them as yet another elite run surveillance and control system; not to mention instruments of death; and with good reason. And then the 3Dprinting narrative says we can all make anything we want at any time avoiding sweatshops and taking a post-globalisation sidestreet..
There are some projects out there that are trying to open up much more complex hybrid narratives between the two, like Jasper Van Loenan’s Drone It Yourself; Myself and OFFCUTLIverpool were asked by @ANDFestival to build his 3Dprinted DIY drone for the AND Fair
It’s not the first DIY drone; drones are by default a massive DIY culture like its older RC flying community, but he has made a brilliant disruptive leap between DIY drone, digital fabrication and design culture. A conversation much more complex, but nevertheless related to the recent media ‘shock’ of the 3D printed gun; its almost a counterpart design narrative but one less easy to resolve a response to. We can make access to drones and quadcopters much easier by digital fabrication but then to make it fly unstable inappropriate objects glitches up the engineering process; quadcoptors need super light weight balanced structures to get the control that makes them so useful (for whatever reason)
I didnt make our bike wheel fly, the 3D print we did hadn’t enough tensile strength in the direction needed despite Mark, a local designer finding us a much lighter bike wheel!
We did however open up fascinating conversations around these cultures which we should have in retrospect recorded; from ethics and trauma of killing at a distance, to locksports, where & how to 3d print (@DoesLiverpool is the place!), what is prototyping, how to fly, local hackspace culture, how to be an engineer all the way to planning celebrity arduino workshops with Stevie Nicks.
The hardest things to collect are the conversations artists and festivals make happen and no amount of streaming can capture that; you have to be there!
Thanks again to ANDFestival & Jasper for letting me take part in the ANDFair, Mark for donating a wheel, Adrian Mcewen and Glenn Boulter for flight tests, Patrick Fenner and DoESLiverpool for the RepRap use and the brilliant Andy Goodwin for all his help with motors and difficult ESC RC controller board choices!
Great to get involved with Naomi Kashiwagi’s #inthemix sessions at MadLabUK. I brought along a 4bit (possibly less) crunchy lasercut acrylic bootleg of That Fucking Tank’s ‘Brucesteenhenge’ and a micro rumble strip prototype all made with the elegant coding and calculation of Amanda Ghassaei's Instructable. Try it! Must be the most elaborate and useless bootleg of their brilliant work it gets worse each time you play it…I will have to send them one in tribute to their work with Never Records in Liverpool…
Then really good to think about other forms of making music physical or the other way round with people like James Medd who showed me his Physical Echoes project. As usual another brilliant mix of people at Madlab!
Completed the first Currently hackspace! Successfully launched our prototype #SerialBuoy a design using recycled water bottles found by John O’Shea on instructables. We used Steve Symon’s handy EasyRadio module to send basic asci messages from the dockside to an LED flasher onboard and of course Open Source Swan Pedalo to launch it driven by Amanda Steggell, Steven Thorpe and Elisabeth Weihe.
@amcewen and I played around with #NoisyTable and managed to use the comport object in PureData to turn the MIDI output of the NoisyTable arduino into a solenoid trigger using some simple toy bells that we made an acrylic stand @OFFCUTLiverpool.
We didn’t manage a #pingpong rendition of jingle bells but we did play some chords! @mikestubbs brought his kids along for testing purposes later. Plan is to get some fresh solenoids attached to the ‘bellhack bellrack’ and the code for reading MIDI and serial all packaged up into a usb powered device so we can get it touring wherever #NoisyTable goes in the future.
Saturday 24th November 2012 4pm - 7.30pm FREE
Everton Park Off Heyworth Street
Please use top car park Off Heyworth Street at entrance near May Duncans Pub or park on Heyworth Street. Pedestrians enter on Heyworth Street near the Breck Road traffic lights, follow the glowing signs and people with High Viz vests!
FREE Family Astronomy Event
Astroturf is a family friendly event to introduce the objects of the night sky and the many ways you can observe, from optical and radio telescopes to social media, mobile applications and simply looking up and recognising satellites, stars and constellations.
Part of Liverpool Biennials “Unexpected Guest” programme, artist Ross Dalziel has invited the ‘unexpected knowledge’ of Merseyside’s community of amazing amateur astronomy enthusiasts of Liverpool Astronomical Society Sidewalk Astronomy (LASSA). This 129 year old organisation will help show families and artists the amazing activity in the night sky and allow people to explore the local DIY expertise of their city at a site overlooking the Liverpool skyline.
Fingers crossed we will get a clear & dry window to use the amazing telescopes of the North West amateur astronomers of (LASSA)
Make Planispheres and night vision torches
Talks & Presentations
Introduction Ross Dalziel Artist
The LAS Brendan Martin Liverpool Astronomical Society Observatory Director
The X-Ray Universe Martyn Bristow Liverpool John Moores University Astrophysics Research Institute
Pulsars and Machine Learning Rob Lyon Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics/MerseySTEM network
Last month worked with artist Dave Lynch to create Balloon Vortex an interactive play space using a series of fans to create a temporary vortex to drive LED embedded weather balloons around Whitehaven civic hall. A kinect tracked the objects and made projection mappings live while families were invited to customise balloons and play with the vortex system accompanied by sound workshops with Octopus. More pictures by Dave here.